11 August 1862: “the sentinels through whose neglect or the officer through whose orders it is done, shall be tried by drum head court martial and shot without mercy…”

Item description: General Orders, No. 1, from Head Quarters of the Bridge Guards, Wilmington, N.C.

Item citation: From folder 2 of the T. L. Clingman Papers, #157, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Item transcription:

Head Quarters Bridge Gds.
Wilmington Aug 11th 1862

General Orders No. 1

I. Each Sentinel is to have cartridges in his cartridge box but not to load  his musket unless an emergency arises.

II. The articles of war are to be read at each post

III. No furloughs are to be granted to enlisted men. And officers are not to leave their post without written permission from Head Quarters in the usual form. Any officer violating this order will be reported and Court Martialed

IV. Sick men will be sent to the nearest hospital

V. All men on furlough will be ordered to report immediately

VI. The weekly reports will show the morning report of each day of the week and not as heretofore for one day only

VII. No officer or man is authorized to destroy a bridge on the approach of an enemy. It is therefore the duty of each officer to defend his post to the last extremity and if driven from it to leave the bridge standing, unless he has written orders from the General Commanding to the contrary. I am instructed by the General to say that if through negligence or from fear of the enemy any of the bridges shall be destroyed, the sentinels through whose neglect or the officer through whose orders it is done, shall be tried by drum head court martial and shot without mercy

VIII. Sentinels immediately after the passage of a train will examine the interior of the bridge thoroughly, the roof, the floor timbers, the braces, ceilings &c to see that no sparks are left by the engine and for this purpose they will pass rapidly through the bridge several times examining it carefully and should they discover fire make an immediate alarm.

IX. Before the arrival of each train sentinels will examine the bridge to see that it is clear of obstacles

X. The army camp regulations will be carefully observed at each post regular roll calls and drills had, and each officer will make his part as secure from attack as the position will allow fortifying his camp if necessary.

W.S.G. Andrews
Capt. 10th Reg. N.C.T. Artillery
Comdg. Bridge Guards

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